Are you running out of prospects? If you are, you’re certainly not alone.
Plenty of sales professionals actually find themselves in similar situations—they also run out of sales prospects. This usually occurs because they tend to rely mostly on “low-hanging fruits” and their “primary market blinders.” Low-hanging fruits are the people closest to them like family and friends, while primary market blinders are their usual “go to” market segments.
So what do you do to avoid running low on sales prospects? Learn to attract people towards you. In other words, become a people-magnet! But how do you do this? The answer is simple. Be interesting and likable. And use your different personas because after all, who you are is whom you attract.
Yes, we all tend to like those who are similar to us because we find them interesting. The idea seems amusing, yet it’s true. This is referred to as similarity-attraction effect where people like or are attracted to others who are similar to themselves. It’s like what the old adage says “birds of the same feathers flock together.”
Gwendolyn Seidman of Psychology Today shares the same observation and gave several reasons for these.
- Consensual validation—we feel more confident knowing that another person shares the same passion.
- Cognitive evaluation—we feel that the other person has other positive traits because of the fact that we already share a few positive traits.
- Certainty of being liked—we assume that a person who shares a lot in common with us, will also like us.
- Fun and enjoyable interactions—it’s just more fun to hangout with someone when you have a lot in common.
- Self-expansion opportunity—we perceive that we can learn more if we hangout with people who are similar to us. Now that you know the secret of being interesting and likable, start making an inventory of your persona. Dig deep and look at your age, generation, gender, background, passions, hobbies, schools attended, places visited, music genres, favorite movies, travels, values, investments, dreams, aspirations and belief systems. There can be more. Make a list.
Then match any of these to your clients.
Let’s look at how some of these personas work.
Age and Generation. This is the usual area of similarity and attraction. A particular age, like Gen-X, millennials, and Gen-Z, identify themselves within the same generation because they may have similar influences and experiences.
The prevailing fashion, food, movies, and other trends during that period usually bind people within the same age groups and generation together, as they likewise may share similar thoughts and perspectives in life.
Passion. What are you passionate about? Was there a time when you encountered another individual sharing the same passion as yours? What happened? Chances are that you immediately liked the other person, right? Once you identify a prospect’s passion that is similar to yours, focus your conversation along that topic. And soon, you’ll find yourselves engaged in a passionate discussion about what you both are passionate about. And that’s a good way to start a long-term business relationship.
Background. One tends to favor those who came from the same background—the person from the same school, similar childhood experience, parallel financial standing, comparable educational background, and so on. That’s because we can identify with people of the same experiences, struggles and challenges in life. Somehow, we feel that we can relate with them the most, and vice versa.
Values. People with similar values and principles in life gravitate towards one another. When you genuinely stand for a certain cause or belief system, the tendency is to associate with another who firmly holds the same set of values and principles. This is usually where alliances are formed. The key is to find out what interests the other person and try to match these with one of your personas. And you will soon discover the spark that will start a fruitful business relationship. That’s how you become a people-magnet. But please, beware of being a phony. People can tell and if you’re not sincere, it will eventually backfire on you.
Alexey Rola Cajilig is the President of ARCWAY Consultancy Inc. and Executive Director of ARC DOCENDI. He is a Sales Leadership Coach, Strategic Sales Operations Consultant, Christian Motivational Speaker, Human Ecologist and Author of The effective Seller. He is also the creator of ARCH Styles, a behavioral and personality assessment tool. If you have questions and suggestions, you may send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.